CristalACTiV™ Photocatalytic TiO₂: The science behind self-cleaning surfaces

Have you ever wished you could go longer between window and wall cleanings? How about easier cleaning with one quick sponge stroke? Titanium dioxide (TiO2), as a semiconductor, offers a smart technology solution through its photocatalytic properties. Surfaces treated with specifically designed TiO2 will see the time between cleaning cycles extended, likewise leading to cost savings in maintenance. Today, high-tech buildings of all sizes around the world are making use of this functionality.

No magic, but a well-known chemical reaction – it all happens at the catalytic TiO2 surface thanks to UV light, oxygen and humidity. The level of UV light present in normal daylight is sufficient to activate the so-called photocatalytic reaction. Under irradiation, the TiO2 surface sites react with adsorbed atmospheric water, generating reactive hydroxyl radicals, which will oxidize organics such as dirt and grime, leading to their mineralization. The surface then becomes “self-cleaning”. On glass, the self-cleaning effect is boosted by the super-hydrophilic effect, avoiding the formation of droplets and consequently eases the washing away of the degraded dirt.

Tronox has a full range of photoactive TiO2 products that have demonstrated self-cleaning performance in real-life conditions. From dry powders to stable colloidal suspensions, Tronox offers the best-in-class commercial range of photocatalytic TiO2. Our photocatalytic TiO2 can either be introduced as an active component in formulations or used in direct applications. Tronox’s Specialty plant in Thann, France, with more than 30-years of experience in manufacturing Ultrafine and Specialty TiO2, produces our photocatalytic TiO2 with the highest standards of quality and consistency. With a dedicated sales force spread all over the world, CristalACTiV™ TiO2 products serve a broad portfolio of industries and are used by academics around the globe.

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Tronox is continuously developing new CristalACTiV™ materials to meet existing and future environmental regulations and respond to the needs of innovative applications.

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